Like goes with like,
if it fits on the shelf.
wherever there’s room.
Some don’t fit easily,
too tall or too thick to sit
where they make sense,
with other books on the same subject.
The books move up and down and around
as I seek the best way to integrate them
until I don’t care and put them anyplace.
My friend, you left most of your books behind
when you went to retirement,
on purpose, I know.
You had to go; you need more help
closer at hand,
and you knew what you didn’t need
to take with you,
so you left them with other
I make room on my shelf
for I don’t know when I’ll need them,
but I will.
I make my chaotic catalogue,
a fitting way to think of it:
you always kept your mind orderly
although our conversations rarely were.
It’s often better that we don’t know what we’re doing,
usually true for me.
You are a good mentor for a man without heroes;
We could never talk about it,
being stereotypical men.
The shelves fill up and find the semblance of order,
and like water seeking its level,
something else empties in return.